Oh my goodness, today is my second day back from Cabo, Mexico. It's raining here in San Diego and kind of cold. I am happy to be home safe and sound with kiddos. I did miss them. But I have to be honest I am kind of missing the sunshine, pool time, warm air, ocean views and the no kid vibe. I had four nights away. That's four more than I have had in almost 3 years. Whoa!
But as promised to you all on instagram, I spent my first work day back perfecting my pesto for the kelp noodle dish. It's a little sweet, kind of tangy, definitely garlicy, toasty from the almonds but also super duper fresh thanks to the mint.
Usually pesto is super savory and oily but this recipe is more asian in style. I prefer this style sauce when working with kelp noodles.
I have been making kelp noodle recipes for years now. But just the other day, the brilliant Meredith Baird shared a really handy dandy trick: soak the kelp noodles first in baking soda. WHAAAA? Why didn't I know this? It helps the noodles to soften. Kind of the same way marinating kale in lemon and a dash of olive oil helps them soften and become more palatable. I love all these vegan (raw) cooking tricks. Thanks Meredith!
Mint Pesto is so good. Like completely different than basil or kale pesto. But so freakin' good. It's unique in it's flavor. You really have to try it at least once to see what I'm talking about.
I made my pesto with garlic and ginger and a bit of raw honey too. I like it a touch sweet.
MINT GINGER PESTO OVER KELP NOODLES
cook time 10-15 minutes max
For the pesto:
- ¾ cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
- 3 tablespoon avocado oil (I used lime flavored but you don't have to)
- 1 teaspoon ginger, minced or chopped
- ¼ cup almonds, chopped & toasted
- 3-4 whole garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon fresh jalapeño, chopped (or less if you don't like spice, but use a little for flavor)
- 1 teaspoon raw honey
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
For the Noodle Salad (or other crunchy veggies):
- ½ cup raw carrots, chopped or shaved or julienned
- ½ cup raw corn kernels, cut straight from the cob
- pinch sea salt
- 1 teaspoon avocado oil
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1, 12 oz package, kelp noodles
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
For the pesto:
- In a food processor add all of the ingredients. Note: You can use raw almonds or toasted. I like the toasty flavor so I toast my almonds first in the oven or toaster oven for about 8 minutes at 350 degrees F.
- Process the ingredients by pulsing for about 1 minute.
- Scrape sides of the bowl. Set aside pesto.
For the noodles + veggies:
- In a medium sized bowl mix the kelp noodles with juice of just half a lemon and the baking soda. This will soften the noodles. Using your hands you'll want to mix the noodles well until coated in lemon and baking soda. Set them aside while you prep the rest of the dish. Keep checking on them and mixing by hand so they continue to soften. When ready, you'll want to rinse them first.
- After you are finished prepping the carrots and corn, add the avocado oil, sea salt, and juice of half a lemon. Toss until well coated.
- Add this mixture to the noodles (don't forget to rinse them first and dry them). Top with the mint pesto.
- Serve. Garnish with more mint and toasted almonds.